The TYPO3 Demo Website is Launching

Categories: Development , TYPO3 CMS , Marketing Created by Desirée Lochner
I am delighted to announce the launch of a brand-new website explaining TYPO3, and showing some of the amazing features it offers. The site gives you, your potential clients and people interested in TYPO3 the chance to take a look at the CMS we all build and love.

Try Out the Demo Site Now

What’s the Need for a Demo Project?

You know the familiar situation: You’re at an event or having a meeting getting to know potential clients who have never used TYPO3 before. They’re still trying to figure out whether TYPO3 would be a good fit for their needs. 

You’re hearing questions like “What does the TYPO3 backend look like?”, “Is TYPO3 easy to understand and work with, especially if you only login every other month?”, “Will I be able to do XYZ with TYPO3?”. And these are all legitimate questions when choosing and committing to a  CMS. 

We usually don't have a demo-site at hand, showing standard defaults and popular features. The next thought might be to  show an existing project, but these are hard to demonstrate with all the GDPR hurdles and NDAs standing in the way. The official Introduction Package does a great job of showing some of the powerful features of TYPO3, but the frontend is far from a real-world example of a typical website.

Now there is a solution: The TYPO3 demo project! 

How Does the Demo Work?

We wanted to make it as easy as possible: You do not have to be a developer,  and you don’t need to have access to a web server to download and install TYPO3. The demo project is running and waiting for people to try out. Just open your browser, go to demo.typo3.org and have fun! It couldn’t be easier!

When opening the website you’ll see that the TYPO3 demo project is based on a fictitious example of how people might want to build a website. The demo project gives you an insight on what a frontend built with TYPO3 can look like. But it doesn’t stop there! A custom backend login allows you to switch from an editor role that can see the “whole” backend (with Admin tools excluded), to another editor role that can only see one specific module (in this case a custom-built FAQ module). Being able to limit the access within the backend for some users is a common need and a strong suit of TYPO3’s permission capabilities.

The demo project allows  people to login, edit and delete whatever they like in the backend, and then see the results of their work on the website  right away. The system is reset after 30 minutes (or less if someone else has logged in before you), so there is no need to worry about “breaking” anything. Don't worry, a timer in the backend tells you when the next reset will be - so there are no surprises.

This is a game-changer: you’ll be able to encourage potential clients to feel free to edit and try out whatever they like!

How Did the Demo Project Come to Life?

My colleagues and myself at b13 wanted to build a demo website with “regular” requirements. We sent our idea and proposal to the TYPO3 Association to make it an official sitepackage using best practices.

The major challenge was to choose a common, non-biased topic that would allow us to create original content. We decided to go with a website about everyone’s favourite fruit: apples!.

We implemented

  • Different page types to show apple varieties and recipes.
  • Several content types with helpful backend previews to give editors an easy overview of the content
  • An explanation section on each page in the backend to explain features that might be interesting on that particular page
  • An FAQ module in the backend that shows how easily you can build custom modules which make it effortless for users to edit content
  • A language switch on the frontend, to show that TYPO3 can handle multiple languages easily
  • A frontend login to show how you can restrict your content to certain frontend users (an impressive out-of-the-box feature of TYPO3)

What Is on the Horizon?

I am happy to announce that the demo project will have its own “demo team” from the Association, so we as a community (you included!) can continue to contribute and maintain it under the TYPO3 Association umbrella. We know that there are still so many features worth showcasing to TYPO3 prospects. And we are excited to keep extending what the demo project can offer.

The following ideas are planned to be added  throughout 2021:

  • Translating the website to a language with right-to-left script (e.g. Arabic or Hebrew)
  • A search in the frontend
  • Using EXT:forms to show how easily you can create forms
  • Structured data for SEO
  • Create a build package to install the demo project on your own server

How to give feedback on the project

I would love your feedback on the project and especially would like to know what kind of features you want implemented. Find me on Slack (@Desi Lochner) in the TYPO3 workspace and let me know what you think!

Join the team!

There is a brand-new TYPO3 demo team that focuses on developing and enhancing the project. If you would like to be part of it, let me know!

Try Out the Demo Site Now

Additional contributors for this article
  • Proofreader : Felicity Brand